Let’s start by answering a question that some of you might be asking right now. Why bothering to specify that this is a Republic in the title? Because Ireland is an island divided by two countries. The Republic of Ireland, to which this article is dedicated to, and Northern Ireland which is part of the United Kingdom.
Recently I visited a city in the north of Ireland, Derry, and I noticed that there are still a lot of confusion between the “Irelands”. The confusion has some reason to be, after all there are three Irelands. And with that, people get quite confused between the three. Yes, three! Not one, not two, but three!
It is time for more Red Bull Cliff Diving! This year’s series already had a few jumps, and again this year one of the amazing stops was the Islet of Vila Franca, next to São Miguel Island, in Azores. And without realizing, I almost saw another jump but this time in Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina, where they’ll jump from the historical bridge. Unfortunately I was there two weeks before the jumps.
The Wild Atlantic Way is an Atlantic route through the coast of Ireland, also the longest coastal touristic route in the world. The reason why it’s called “Wild” is because this rote wasn’t planned to be touristic, nor was changed in any way for that. It is literally a real and unchanged experience through the coast of Ireland.
The weekend of November 23rd/24th I spent in Killarney, I’ve passed through the town a few times but never actually stayed a whole day there. I did it finally, the town is the start/end of the Ring of Kerry Route and it should be properly appreciated.
Last year I wrote the 2010 review and 2011 goals, which turned out to be surprisingly good therefore I’ll do again this year and see what happens.
Some highlights about 2010:
I’ll keep this goal, to go abroad, but now with a slight difference I won’t make such a big deal of it.
Considering that I am now working in Ireland, I can tell this goal was successfully achieved! The best part is that I really didn’t make a big deal out of it, it happened almost by chance. I tried unsuccessfully several times to get a job abroad and at some point it was more important just to change my job, when I gave up with the “abroad” idea this chance appeared and I didn’t let it go, again 🙂
Another thing that I want to change is my blog’s name, but for that I need that something changes in my life, something worthy.
Look Left looks like a name’s change 🙂 And I guess I can say that something really changed in my life! 🙂
I need to do something meaningful with my life such as volunteering and helping those that really need it!
Not yet…, but I was part of the Movember Team, I believe that’s a start 🙂 And I just realized that I never wrote about that…, shame on me! I should do that ASAP!
My goal for this year is getting a way of self-sustain and invest sometime to learn something that I can earn money working at home and anywhere, this doesn’t mean that I will quite my job but that I want to get a Plan B.
I totally failed with this one…, postponing it to 2012!
I will keep writing in English
Mission accomplished! This one was easy, and I believe I improved my English quite a lot 🙂
My feeling about 2011, before I (re)read the 2010 review and 2011 goals’ post, was that half of my year was again a total disaster…, but now I think that the whole year was a huge success! Every single step I did was in the same direction, even if I didn’t realize it by then, quoting Steve Jobs:
Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.
So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.
And I am already feeling like it!
A more deep review about 2011, despite the pre-set goals, 2011 was really another big year like all my latest years. In January I started actively searching for a new job, and because of that I gave up of some opportunities I had, it took me several months to get it maybe because of the crisis, maybe because of my lack of experience, maybe because of my CV. I don’t really know. Normally this kind of things leads to frustration, and at some point I lowered my goals and I decided to”just move”.
May was the month that everything changed, and I say quite often that if someone told me in May that I would go to Peru in less than a year I would think that person was crazy or just trying to upset me…, and now I am preparing a trip to Peru in less than two months!
10th June, Portugal’s day and the day I left Portugal again! New country, still in Europe. The fourth country I lived in in less than 5 years! I am still amazed by how much my life changed, and eager to keep doing it! I’m only sorry for not starting this life earlier, because I am really loving being me just right now!
I miss my nephews’ birthdays, but as a present I brought them to Ireland, their first flight trip! Well, both are too young and they might forget about it soon…, but I was with them for at least a few days and that’s the more important thing.
In October one of the most important person of my life passed away, after almost three months it’s still hard for me to accept it…, but life’s goes on.
I am back in Portugal now, for Xmas and NYE, returning to Ireland today! Again, looking back I can say the year was a blast again! Some very bad things, some really good, but in general the good ones were the majority.
About 2012, I still want to learn or do something that pay me the bills, or at least let me travel and pay for my travel addictions. It’s easy to say “freelancing”, but harder to do it. I love my current job, and now that I have more free time I should invest it in other ways rather than pubs 🙂
About the volunteering, I won’t do it in 2012 for sure, probably small projects or campaigns like the Movember one. Volunteering is still a life goal, but I am sure that I won’t be able to do it properly in 2012, I want to take 4 or 5 months off for that and since I just got a new job that I really like, I’ll postpone it a while. Probably I’ll do it in 2013, who knows?
Learning Spanish! I don’t know why I never did this before in a very serious way! I know some Portuñol, I have the advantage that the Portuguese grammar and vocabulary are really quite similar with the Spanish one, and with a good level of Spanish I’ll have almost half of the world as an easy “target” to conquer!
Travel! That’s not a goal, it’s rather a lifestyle 🙂 Until now I only have one big trip planned, to Peru, but I am looking forward for bigger days in Ireland because I want to explore deeper that country. I don’t believe I’ll do another big trip in 2012, maybe to Greece with my parents (if I manage to convince them…), but nothing more than that. But well…, already thinking about 2013 😀 Planing travels is really addictive 😀
Sports, I need to do more sports…, I started with the gym a few months ago, but I’d rather do more outdoors. After March I might apply to kayak lessons, and keep doing hiking. I’ll try to organize one or two hiking trips, Ireland is quite nice for that.
And I think that’s enough for goals, few but possible to achieve! Everything else is bonus 🙂
This is starting to be scary, once again my huge luck is surprising me and those around me…, we planed to go to the Cliffs of Moher during last week, a great sunny week (for irish standards)…, however everything has to end and also the good weather. Today we started our trip around 9am, a rainy day was ahead and as everything in Ireland we shouldn’t postpone this trip because the weather will always be unpredictable. Ok, let’s go! Cliffs of Moher!
Rain, rain, rain all the way…, and I was all the way barging about my huge luck and that we would have a great sunny day at the Cliffs… But before the cliffs, we had to make a stop for gas and food (fast breakfast) were we met an American guy hitch hiking also to the Cliffs. He asked us for a ride, but we were already 3 and a dog…, so we said no. But on the car we decided “let’s help the guy”…, we has already gone 🙁 Pity….
Back to the road…, rain, rain and more rain…, oh wait…, some sunshine… now some real sun and just cloudy…, oh there’s the cliffs and a blue sky!! Yep, it happened again!
The cliffs are great, but to be honest nothing that surprising. Just some cliffs, quite high though, but nothing too impressive. In my humble opinion there are way more impressive things in Ireland, but I still think it’s worth the trip!
The path is quite easy to do, always close to the scarps but nothing too challenging. We had a situation with some cows and Kaja (the dog that was with us), which forced us to run a little bit close to the edge (that was funny :P) and tens of photos! We didn’t go until the end, after a while we decided to go back and go for some food, after all we didn’t have any lunch and it was already almost 4pm. And when we decided to go back…, who did we find in the cliffs?? The american guy that asked for a ride!
Apparently today someone died (or disappeared) in the cliffs, Steve (the American guy) told us that they were looking for a guy that decided to do part of the trail alone…, the typical situation that you tell your friends “I am just behind you” and that everything goes wrong… Hopefully everything is ok with the guy, we had no more news about that.
Back to the car, which we paid 18 euros for parking… tip for those driving there: Do NOT go to the park with a car full of people, every each of them will pay 6 euros while nobody is checking for the tickets at the cliffs entrance!
Well, we gave a ride to the american guy to a town which I don’t remember the name, but before that we stop for “lunch/dinner”. While there, he asked us if he could go with us all the way to Cork! Well, no trouble at all! And the guy has an amazing life-story, it is always great to meet new people even better when they are such unique!
The way back wasn’t that exciting, some stops for photo shooting to the sunset, and nothing more than that, just that Steve might be now camping at the University College Cork’s campus 🙂 Good luck with that!
This Sunday I went to another town nearby Cork, a place mostly know by its restaurants and gourmet food, also by its history and the Flight of the Earls. As usually, I should had read about the town before going there, but sometimes the surprise its kinda of nice. Kinsale is quite close to Cork, perfect for a day escape from the city.
Oh gosh, I don’t know how I have strengths to write this today…, but I have to! Today makes exactly one month since I arrived in Cork, so what’s the best way to celebrate it? Hiking the island’s highest mountain! Carrauntoohil!
Another Sunday, another sunny surprise! What an amazing day, I wasn’t imagining to have such a great day and enjoying it so much! The Blarney Castle and Gardens definitely worth the visit if you are in Cork!
Cobh was my first stop, quite short though, but it was a nice unexpected sunny day! Who would’ve guess? Not me, definitely!